This month’s manga chapter for Attack on Titan continued the amazing run the manga has been on in recent months. There were several points of interest established in this chapter including the possibility of someone from paradise having already infiltrated the Marley Army, Reiner’s backstory and teases of Annie’s true motivations. This chapter was entirely used as a tool to develop Reiner and to make him more interesting and compelling so his inevitable death is more impactful.
First of all let’s discuss and theorise on if a Paradise individual has infiltrated the Marley ranks and if someone has who are they? Now this entire conversation is a result of the panel displayed below. Many readers have theorised that the soldier depicted in the panel is an Eldian spy from Paradise. Predominantly two names have been brought up as to who it could be; Eren and Hange. To me it couldn’t conceivably be Eren, because that would be the dumbest possible move by the inhabitants of Paradise. Why would they under any situation allow Eren to be in a position to be captured? That would mean that two titan shifting abilities would be lost and Marley would absolutely decimate the scouts. So I think we can rule Eren out completely and I don’t see it being Hange either. She already is missing and eye but I don’t think Isayama would also amputate one of her legs as well, rendering her completely useless in combat. Therefore I really have no idea who it could be but I am convinced that it is a spy from Paradise because of the characters previous actions in his panels, in chapter 93. A wild theory that I lend slight credibility to is that it could be a time-traveling Eren but we don’t nearly have enough time to delve into that subject in this review.
The bulk of this month’s chapter was dedicated to fleshing out Reiner as a character and showing the readers his backstory. Within this chapter, especially displayed in the final pages, Isayama creates an evident parallel between Eren and Reiner. In the story they are two sides of the same coin with similar motivations relating to their mothers and the fact that there younger self’s were determined and ignorantly hoping to ‘kill them all.’ It was also interesting to see Bertolt being the more outgoing and confident of the two of them when they were kids, this could be a result of either him trying to impress Annie who was nearby or because he was less conflicted back in Marley. We also got some rare insight into Annie’s possibly true motivations in relation to Reiner’s flashback. The alarm bells certainly went off in my head when see blows of Bertolt’s speech about loyalty, which may lead to the reveal that she and her mysterious father’s true motivations. But I am developing a theory article all about analysing Annie’s true motivations that will be realised soon so you’ll have to come back later to see that. The only negatives in Reiner’s expositional flashbacks that I thought was underwhelming was the plot line surrounding his mother. It seemed a little too generic and ‘Romeo and Juliet’ for my tastes. But overall because of this I believe Reiner as a whole has become and much more interesting and relatable character.
These last several chapters have been pretty great and Chapter 94 continued this streak. This chapter gets an 8. Also there seems to be quite and bit of confusion within the fan base surrounding these previous chapters and that’s understandable because we have to wait a whole, entire month for the following chapter. However I recently read the past 10 or so, chapters back to back and they flow better and make much more sense in you use that reading strategy.